This Handbook is just what it sets out to be, and what is needed in the field of Jewish Coinage. Mel Wacks has contributed mightily to this field. And this Handbook - replacing his first version with an entirely new revision - is among his most important gifts. Somehow, Mel has managed to provide a work that is succinct without being superficial; that summarizes all the important material rather than limiting coverage through exclusion; and that simplifies complicated issues without compromising their difficulties.
In pulling off this achievement, Mel has provided a practical, take-along, guide. Every important period is covered, and every significant coin type illustrated. Rather than attempting to supersede other types of books, Mel gives us all - collectors, scholars, and intelligent observers alike - something to use anywhere to identify coin types and context, read inscriptions, and even have some idea of value.
Even a novice will be able quickly to learn and appreciate this aspect of Jewish history, and the history of other cultures with whom the Jewish People have interacted. The Handbook is thus a must have for the tutored and beginner alike.
Hon. Abraham Sofaer
George P. Shultz Distinguished Scholar and Senior Fellow Emeritus, The Hoover Institution, Stanford University.